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Ball held in memory of late Haverhill teenager nets £2,500 for cancer charity

From left: Susan New, Shirley Gower, Dawn Gower and Alison Ramsay, CLIC Sargent fundraising manager for Norfolk and Suffolk ANL-140104-110000005

From left: Susan New, Shirley Gower, Dawn Gower and Alison Ramsay, CLIC Sargent fundraising manager for Norfolk and Suffolk ANL-140104-110000005

 

A charity ball organised by the family of a 14-year-old girl who died from cancer has resulted in more than £2,500 being donated to CLIC Sargent.

A charity ball organised by the family of a 14-year-old girl who died from cancer has resulted in more than £2,500 being donated to CLIC Sargent.

The My Blue Heart ball held at Sturmer Hall on January 25 was attended by 220 people and raised over £10,000, with a £2,572 donation made to CLIC Sargent, the UK’s leading charity for children and young people with cancer.

The ball was organised by the family of Jess Gower, from Arrendene Road in Haverhill, who died of bone cancer in 2010 and was named after the charity formed by Jess’s mum Shirley to help other families in times of bereavement.

The charity ball was also held to mark what would have been Jess’s 18th birthday.

Shirley said: “Since Jess died we have talked to many others who live on without people they love and who have welcomed the opportunity to talk.

“As a family we love the lines `I carry your heart with me, I carry it in my heart’ in the poem by E.E. Cummings. “It occurred to me that we could create a way to communicate loss to others and hopefully encourage more openness and support in return to help us get through each day.

“My Blue Heart, a forget-me-not blue with a red heart in its heart, lets everyone know that I carry your heart in mine’ and always will.”

My Blue Heart particularly aims to support the brothers, sisters, cousins and friends of children who have died, helping them to understand their loss and find positive ways forward.

To this end, 25 per cent of the monies raised by My Blue Heart supports the CLIC Sargent Social Care Team at Addenbrooke’s hospital, who gave extensive support to the Gower family through their devastating loss of Jess.

The My Blue Heart team had already raised £500 for CLIC Sargent since the sale of their pin badges began last year.

Mrs Gower went on to thank the Cambridge University Dancesport Team which gave a free Latin and ballroom dancing demonstration, plus the local companies who sponsored tables on the night.

Alison Ramsay, the local CLIC Sargent fundraising Manager said “We are extremely grateful to My Blue Heart for their generous support for CLIC Sargent.

“This was a very special evening and a lot of effort went into its success, people were extremely generous.”

“Every day, ten children and young people hear that they have cancer; so these donations are so important, helping us to continue supporting children and their families here in Suffolk, and across the UK.”

CLIC Sargent provides clinical, practical and emotional support for young cancer patients and their families, from diagnosis onwards. For more information visit www.clicsargent.org.uk

You can follow My Blue Heart at https://www.facebook.com/icarryyourheartinmine.

 

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